Alzheimer's Disease Takes Away Our Loved Ones Before They Are Gone

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Alzheimer’s disease is an irreversible, progressive brain disease that slowly destroys memory and thinking skills and eventually even the ability to carry out the simplest tasks. Estimates vary, but experts suggest that as many as 5.1 million Americans may have Alzheimer’s disease. For most people with Alzheimer’s, symptoms first appear after age 60; however there is no specific age that a person can get the disease. If you are between the ages of 30 and 50, the disease is called Younger on-set Alzheimer’s.
The early symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease are loss of memory, problems with doing daily living tasks, and sometimes it will affect language. A person can become disoriented to places, people, and time. Many people with Alzheimer’s will
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The next step is to do tests on the brain itself to rule out other possible conditions. Doctors will often do a CT scan first, then an MRI, and possibly a PET scan; these tests will show abnormalities of the brain, and they will help rule out tumors, clots, or if the patient has had a stroke. “The CT provides a clear, two-dimensional image of the brain that shows abnormalities such as brain tumors, blood clots, strokes, or damage due to head injury” (Hill 2008). This procedure is painless, and nothing is inserted on, or into your head. The patient is fully awake during the procedure.
An MRI uses computer-generated radio waves and a strong magnetic field to produce a detailed image of the brain. “MRIs are helpful in the diagnosis of tumors, eye diseases, infections, inflammation, and damage due to head injury” (Hill 2008). When getting an MRI, you lay on a table that slides into a tube, and they use computer-generated radio waves and a very strong magnetic field to see images of the brain. This test will allow the doctor to see two and three-dimensional images of your brain.
The PET scan also will show two and three-dimensional images of the brain; however, the PET scan measures brain activity. This is done by injecting radioactive isotopes into the blood stream. The isotopes attach to
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